NCAA Basketball Office Pools: Are They Legal?

March Madness is here and ready to distract your employees. They will be filling out brackets this week, crumpling them up, picking No. 5 seeds for upsets. And they’ll be gambling the whole time, too. You may have let it slide during the Super Bowl, but with office pools cropping up everywhere, you’re probably wondering whether you have a legal obligation to shut them down. It depends. Though federal law frowns upon the practice, state law varies as to whether office pools constitute illegal gambling. Local law probably has something to say about it, too. Texas permits office pools so long as they’re private and the organizer doesn’t make any cash running the pool, but Illinois considers office pools to be misdemeanor gambling . They’ll push that up to a felony if caught twice. It’s clear that you need to check in with your state’s gambling commission (or whichever entity is tasked with regulating this area) to determine the scope of state law. It may be forbidden, or you may have to institute a per-person expenditure cap. If office pools are illegal, it would be wise to shut them down. By providing the location in which the pool is conducted, you or your company may be criminally liable as an accessory. There could be civil penalties as well. Even if office pools aren’t illegal, it might still be wise to shut a pool down. Besides being a documented drain on productivity, office pools can cause some hefty human resources problems. How can you fire one employee for gambling on the job and not everyone engaging in the pool? And what are you going to do about that one employee who can’t handle a little good-natured ribbing? Related Resources: Is our office NCAA pool legal? (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) Aiding and Abetting/Accessory (FindLaw) Delaware Sports Gambling? Don’t Bet On It (FindLaw’s Courtside) Is Online Gambling on School Grades Legal? (FindLaw’s Law & Daily Life) Know When to Fold ‘Em: Texas Hold ‘Em Illegal in S.C.? (FindLaw’s Legally Weird)

See the article here:
NCAA Basketball Office Pools: Are They Legal?

Twitter Follow

Follow us on

Contact Us

ATTORNEY ADVERTISEMENT:  This communication or portions thereof may be considered "advertising" as defined by Section 6157(c) of the California Business and Professions Code or within the jurisdiction in which you are viewing this.  Nothing in the discussion above is intended to be a representation or guarantee about the outcome of any legal proceeding in which you may be involved.  By providing the information above in this format, Michel & Associates is not soliciting you to hire it to handle a specific legal matter you may currently have or be anticipating commencing in the future.  Notwithstanding the discussion above, you should not act or refrain from acting on the basis of any content on this site without seeking appropriate legal advice regarding your particular circumstances from an attorney licensed to practice law.  This communication is informational only and does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Michel & Associates.  Michel & Associates's attorneys are licensed to practice in California, Texas, and the District of Columbia.